It never fails to amaze me how much our basic female grooming requirements can cost per year. I am not even talking about anything fancy – just the entry-level stuff. The bare minimum needed, to just get up, go out and not scare people.
£2,300. A. Year.
Full Disclosure. This amount, is just the money I pay other people to make me look pretty. To polish, pluck, wax and dye me in to something vaguely presentable. This does not take into consideration the take home products required to conceal, hydrate, buff and gloss the rest of me. I am not even (that) high maintenance compared to some of my friends.
But does it really have to cost so much? Science says no! Science says we can make ourselves super attractive by doing some/all of the following, although gender specific rules do apply. So, with my tongue lodged ever so slightly in my cheek, may I present: The Zero Dollar Guide to Getting Gorgeous.
Men find women who smile more attractive. Smiling is free and even when faked, tricks our brain into feeling happier. The science behind it is eye-rollingly simple; smiling makes women look friendly and ‘sexually receptive’. “Evolutionally, men have been programmed to seek out women who will be more receptive to their advances”. Doh.
This one works better for the blokes, as women tend to find a man with a good sense of humour hot. The research on this one showed, ‘women like men who make them laugh, and men like women who laugh at their jokes’. And if that won’t make you smile, I am not sure what will
Be (Selectively) Hard to Get
While writing, ‘How to Make Someone Fall in Love With You in 90 Minutes of Less’, Doctor Aron discovered that people like the idea that they are liked. If you ask people about their experience of falling in love, over 90% will say that a major factor was discovering that the other person liked them. However, it was far preferable if the one doing the liking was usually very selective. Also, according to the book ‘59 Seconds: Change Your Life in Under a Minute’, the best strategy is to give a potential date the impression that in general you were hard to get (and therefore a scarce resource worth having) but really enthusiastic about him or her specifically’.
Get A Dog
Yup, the ladies love a dude with a dog. A study, titled, ‘The Roles of Pet Dogs and Cats in Human Courtship and Dating’, crafted by some people with clearly way too much time on their hands, has confirmed it. A guy who treats his furry friend well, is perceived as having good ‘dad’ potential. In the words of one clever journalist, ‘Basically: Women are more likely to want a guy who seems like he would be a responsible, caring parent; guys are more likely to want a girl who seems she would look good in a bikini.’ Men with cats got a lot less love – 32% of the women surveyed said cats would be a deal-breaker.
I am not making this stuff up. Science has spoken and the research shows that ‘a large part of physical attraction is centred on the more changeable aspects of self-preservation.’ According to Jeremy Nicholson, who has lots of important letters after his name, ‘Specifically, the most attractive physical features fall under ‘self-care’ – things like good grooming, clean hair, nice fitting and quality clothing, good posture, and healthy weight.’
So, it seems that in the interest of self-preservation, not to mention the additional bonus of not scaring people, my £2,300 might just be money well spent.